25
Sep

X-Files: The science adviser to whaaat?

The science section of Tuesdays The New York Times (Jan 6, 1998) includes a profile of Biologist Dr. Anne Simon (U Mass, Amherst). The piece (by Carey Goldberg) is entitled The Science Adviser to Whaaat?

It seems that Dr. Simon has, for some time, been a friend of one Chris Carter. Carter is the creator of the X-FILES TV show on the Fox network (U.S.). For the uninitiated, Goldberg describes X-FILES as a dark confection of conspiracy, fantasy and paranormalcy. On the show two FBI agents come across aliens (from outer space), witches, vampires and high government conspiracies. But the crazy thing is often well written and filled with dry humor (EG. in one episode about a southern town whose economy was based upon a chicken processing plant and whose culture was steeped in cannibalism, the local companys motto was: GOOD PEOPLE MAKE GOOD FOOD).

When Carter started to write scripts for the show he called on Dr. Simon for scientific expertise. Simon says (?!?), What Chris says is that the science looking real and being real is what makes the show scary.

In the show Special Agent Fox Mulder has a big sign in his office. The sign reads: THE TRUTH IS OUT THERE

Dr. Simon has a sign on HER office door. Her sign reads: THE TRUTH IS IN HERE

Simon doesnt get paid much for her consulting on the show, but she does get bragging rights and access to clips from the show that she uses in her class lectures. Simon also wears an X-FILES t-shirt when she teaches.

Kinda makes ya wanna go back and take bio again, no?

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